Ground: Rajko Mitić Stadium
Referee: Nenad Đokić (Užice)
Goalscorers: Piasentin og 57', Sikimić 85', Vieira 93' - Piasentin 83'
Crvena zvezda: Manojlović, Petković, Aleksandar Luković, Le Tallec, Anđelković, Donald, Poletanović, Kanga, Ruiz, Mouche, Sikimić.
Substitutes: Supić, Cvetković, Rendulić, Andrija Luković, Plavšić, Srnić, Vieira.
Čukarički: Petrić, Živković, Bulatović, Piasentin, Lagator, Mašović, Obeng, Srnić, Docić, Kajević, Jevtić.
Substitutes: Pajović, Tomić, Đurić, Ožegović, Matić, Mašović, Fofana.
This fixture has proved tough for both clubs in the past, but this season Čukarički are finding it tough to finally hit form. Still, the experience of their players promised a tightly contested match on a rainy Saturday in Belgrade.
The first half was rather slow with both teams finding it difficult to pass the ball and create chances on a difficult pitch. There was only one good chance for Crvena zvezda and it brought no joy as Donald failed to trouble Petrić with a close-range header. In the meantime, the visitors sat back and tried to launch counter-attacks, but were unable to reach Manojlović’s net.
It was clear that this was going to be a different match after the break as Zvezda started to look more determined going forward. Ruiz had missed a one-on-one before the home team finally took the lead on 58 minutes. Kanga was released on the left and his cross bounced off awkwardly for Lucas Piasentin who put it into his own net.
The opening goal meant that the visitors would finally start playing to score and this gave us a better game in the final half-hour.
There was more running and chances, but Red Star’s Mouche, Ruiz and Kanga were left frustrated after missing a few good opportunities to make it 2-0 and seal the points.
As it usually happens, they were punished on 83 minutes when Lucas Piasentin made amends for his own goal with a thunderous equalizer. The Brazilian defender rifled a 25-meter free kick past Manojlović to make it 1-1.
Božović brought Hugo Vieira on in a bid to find a winner and thankfully it paid off. Just two minutes after the equalizer Dušan Anđelković took a corner from the left and Predrag Sikimić dived through the air to hammer a header in and restore the lead for the red-and-whites.
This goal was too much for the tiring visitors and Zvezda secured the win in injury time when Hugo Vieira expertly poked an Anđelković cross into the far corner.
Red Star Belgrade thankfully won three points after the international break and are now looking forward to the next weekend’s match at Spartak Subotica.